The creepiest levels in non-spooky games

The creepiest levels in non-spooky games

Image: Nintendo Life

Apart from costumes, big bowls of candy and the impending fear that I’m a Celebrity will soon dominate TV again, if there’s one thing you can count on during Halloween it’s lots and lots of scary video games. The scary season has an annoying habit of seeking out those of us—this writer included—who aren’t the best at things that go bump in the night, filling our news feeds with lists of The Top 10 Games to Ruin Your Sleep Schedule‘ or ‘Video game moments that will make you think twice before turning off the lights‘. Yes, we have read them, and yes, they keep us up at night every time.

For some people, horror just doesn’t click – books, movies or, more importantly, games. But many of us still like to get involved in the festivities, albeit on a much cozier, less-give-you-sleepless-nights-for-a-week basis.

That’s why we’ve put together the following list. Comprised of games that are largely non-spooky, we’ve selected some suitably spooky levels so we can all feel like we’re part of the same celebration without breaking a cold sweat. Importantly, each of the following selections comes from non-horror themed Nintendo games. You won’t find any Luigi’s Mansion or Majora’s Mask (look, it’s creepy, okay?) here, we’re afraid.

Instead, these are much lighter games, which have the odd sprinkling of a Halloween flavor thrown into a certain zone or level. There’s a whole slew of levels we could have included here (Nintendo has a real thing for taking unexpectedly scary turns), but we’ve decided to limit it to 13 entries, because, you know, scary number.

Even if the horrors of Halloween are a little too much, there’s no reason why we can’t all do some festive gaming!

The scariest levels in non-spooky games

Big Boo’s Haunt, Super Mario 64

It’s one thing to have the odd Boo-based level in a Mario game – a fact we’ve all grudgingly come to accept – but to go from the soothing strings of Super Mario 64’s castle ground to the empty and metallic blast theme of Big Boo’s hangout? Now all you have to do is ask to give us the creeps.

Look, many of these eerie levels are emphasized in our minds through a certain level of nostalgia, but Big Boo’s Haunt really is still scary today. Maybe it’s the blank walls and pointed profiles of the N64 graphics, but such an environment is the kind of nightmare fuel Slenderman could only dream of achieving. It’s no wonder the title has been modded into a first-person horror game.

Creepy Castle, Donkey Kong 64

You know you have a really scary level when the game designers put it in the title. Creepy Castle is just that. The Donkey Kong 64 stage has everything we’re after for some low-stakes spooks. There’s an opening sequence with one of the slowest “jump scares” ever committed to screen, creepy organ music from Grant Kirkhope, a full moon, rain, a giant rolling gorilla – it’s got it all.

Granted, this may be one of the more linear levels in Donkey Kong 64, but we didn’t come here to linger on the ghostliness. Oh no, for the modest amount of scares we’re after, linearity is a treat, thank you very much.

Ghost Ship, The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker

For a game that is generally so filled with brightness and joy, Wind Waker’s Ghost Ship always swept us off the page in our younger years. Going from the fun Ocean Theme straight into a room full of scary monsters? Nah, you’re fine, thanks.

Seriously, Ghost Ship wastes no time throwing you face-to-face with Wizzrobe’s haunting manifestations, and then you clear the room for what? A Triforce Shard, yes, but most notable in our mind is the cackling laughter before waking up to the King of Red Lions. This is not what we signed up for in the fun little boat game!

Haunted Mansion, Kirby: Triple Deluxe

Look, we couldn’t include anything from Luigi’s Mansion in this list because these games wear their spookiness right on their sleeve, but what we can do is include levels that match the Luigi’s Mansion vibe to a T. Such a spooky look can be found in Kirby: Triple Deluxe’s ​​Haunted Mansion, a level full of catching ghosts and sucking them up, only the catching is a little less vacuum cleaner-based.

There are plenty of spooky-themed levels across the Kirby franchise, and we’ll admit it, none of them will keep you up at night – but hey, isn’t that the whole point? The Haunted Mansion in Triple Deluxe may be no more or less spooky than the franchise’s other offerings, but you really can’t go wrong with the low-stakes platformer for Nintendo’s least menacing character.

Just don’t tell Kirby we said so.

Horrorland, Mario Party 2

As if the thought of putting your relationships on the line for anything more than a few stars wasn’t terrifying enough, Horror Land in Mario Party 2 raises the stakes with some seasonal ghosts.

What could be better over Halloween than replacing the genuine jump and scream of horror games with a little Mario Party over a big old bowl of candy? The characters dress up in ghostly clothes for this board (a tradition we see as a must for the real world too), and there’s enough Halloween iconography to make sure you feel involved in the festivities without actually, you know, doing any of the scary stuff.

Lavender Town, Pokemon Red and Blue

Many of the other tiers on this list have been just that inspired of horror, or wear some sort of Halloween theme as a fun little token for the festive folk out there; but Lavender Town, Lavender Town is a straight up horror show.

Rarely is a name so iconic that just hearing it is enough to bring back haunting memories of a soundtrack years after playing, and oh what a creepy song it is. From those cursed sticks to Pokemon Tower and the concept of real death, Lavender Town is one of the scariest places in gaming. Period.

If it weren’t for the sheer joy of the rest of Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow (and Green), you know this would be booted right off this list and with every other horror title.

Mad Monster Mansion, Banjo-Kazooie

Banjo-Kazooie Mad Monster Mansion
A spooky entrance, to be sure – Image: Nintendo

When you think of horror in Banjo-Kazooie, many things immediately come to mind, but what’s the scariest of them all? It is right, camera controls Crazy monster mansion! [*raises eyebrow* – Ed]

The level has everything a good Halloween party should have: tombstones, mummies, poo eggs in flower pots, etc. Throw in some creepy organs – the musical kind from maestro Kirkhope – and you have a recipe for spooky success.

Of course, all this is met by Kazooie’s screeching and the odd interlude of banjo music, so it’s pretty forgiving on the scare front. That said, the pointy N64 polygons once again play their terrifying role to perfection – never has a cartoon witch looked scarier.

Seven down, six to go in this round up of 13 scary levels in otherwise non-scary Nintendo games…

#creepiest #levels #nonspooky #games

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *